Golf Daily Fantasy Expert Advice
Daily Fantasy PGA Picks for DraftKings & FanDuel - Wells Fargo Championship
DFSR is proud to bring you, Chris Durell. He'll be bringing weekly PGA picks, analysis, and breakdowns to help you cash on DraftKings and FanDuel. As every week in DFS PGA changes with the course setup, field of players and weather, Chris will be providing a range of different picks for cash games as well as upside plays for tournaments. If you have any questions to lineup lock you can reach him a variety of ways. Leave your question/comment below in the comments section, find him in the DFSR Chat room or hit him up on Twitter(@Jager_Bombs9). Chris is also providing his DFS PGA Weekly cheatsheet where he provides stats, course history, current form, fantasy points, and much more. Grab your copy today and edge out the competition.
Wells Fargo Championship
After another exciting Zurich Classic team event at TPC Louisiana, the PGA Tour gets back to its regular schedule with the 2018 Wells Fargo Championship. The event moves back to its regular home, Quail Hollow Club, after being moved to Eagle Point Golf Club in 2017 as Quail Hollow was used for the PGA Championship in August. For the course history section on the cheatsheet this week I will be looking at the results from 2012 to 2016 only.
We have the strongest field since the Masters this week as six of the Top 10(Thomas, Fowler, McIlroy, Matsuyama, Koepka, Reed) and 25 of the Top 50 players in the world teeing it up at Quail Hollow. As mentioned above, the course was used last season for the PGA Championship and eventually rated as the hardest course on Tour in 2017 as only 12 players in the field shot under par led by winner Justin Thomas. This year, the course won't play quite as hard PGA setup and should be much more like the setup we have seen in years past for the Wells Fargo. It will still play hard, however, as the Par 71 setup stretches out to just over 7,500 yards and if you aren't a bomber, you better be accurate as the fairways are small and are guarded by water hazards, sand, and some tougher than normal rough. Then there is the closing stretch of holes that can eat up a players score in short period of time. The Green Mile(Holes 16, 17, and 18) is annually considered one of the toughest closing stretches in all of golf. Check out the video below before we jump into the course overview, strends, top stats, and of course the picks.
Quail Hollow Club - Charlotte, NC
Par 71 - 7,600 Yards
Greens - Bermuda
**Click HERE or the pic above to see a hole by hole breakdown from PGATour.com**
Approach Shot Distribution
Average Strokes Gained by Hole by Par
Past Five Winners(Quail Hollow)
- 2016 - James Hahn(-9)
- 2015 - Rory McIlroy(-21)
- 2014 - J.B. Holmes(-14)
- 2013 - Derek Ernst(-8)
- 2012 - Rickie Fowler(-14)
Top Stats in the Model
- Strokes Gained: Off the Tee(30%)
- Strokes Gained: Approach(20%)
- Bogey Avoidance(20%)
- Proximity from 175-200 & 200+ Yards(20%)
- Birdie or Better %(10%)
One little note before jumping into the article. I use multiple sources for my research to help determine key stats starting with Fantasy National Golf Club and their elite set of tools from course history, hole composition, past performance and much, much more. I also combine it with some of the information on Future of Fantasy including correlated courses and most importantly the quotes from players section to help determine what it takes to win here(key stats). When breaking down ownership and trying to come up with popularity, I love the tools over at FanShareSports as they break down every piece of information on articles and social media mentions to provide us with Tag COunts, Sentiment Ratings, Subject Tags, Salary Differential week to week and much more.
Top Course History Targets
There are plenty of players to choose from when looking at course history but the one that stands out for me this week is at the top of the salary. Rory McIlroy has won this event twice(2015, 2010) and has finished Top 10 every trip besides 2011 where he missed the cut. Surprisingly he struggled a bit in last years PGA Championship finishing 22nd but that does not worry me at all. Looking at his stats over the last 20 rounds here at the Quail Hollow Club(Wells Fargo), he ranks #1 in DraftKings scoring, SG: Tot, SG: T2G, SG: BS, and SG: OTT. He had a rough start to his 2018 season with two missed cuts(Pebble Beach, Valspar), a T59(Honda Classic), and T20(Genesis Open) but rebounded in a big way in his last two stroke play events winning the Arnold Palmer Invitational and placing T5 at The Masters. We don't need to pay this far up in cash games but for GPP's, Rory is my #1 play and has a ton of upside.
Streelman narrowly missed the cut here in his last start in 2016 but before that had finishes of 9th in 2015, 14th in 2014, and 6th in 2013. Looking at the last 24 rounds performance(via Fantasy National Golf Club), Streelman also ranks 5th in DraftKings scoring, 13th in Strokes Gained: Ball Striking, 6th in Strokes Gained: Short Game, and 3rd in Strokes Gained: Putting. He also comes into this week with some momentum having picked up back to back Top 10 finishes at the RBC Heritage and Valero Texas Open. At his current price, he is a safe play in all formats.
Also Consider: Rickie Fowler who finished 5th at the PGA Championship last year, T4 at the Wells Fargo in 2016 and he also won this event back in 2012.
Top Current Form Targets
JT tops the form ranks on my sheet this week(not accounting for Zurich team event) and it isn't even looking at his entire season. Through nine stroke play events this season, JT has two wins(The CJ Cup @ Nine Bridges & The Honda Classic), four Top 10's and his worst finish all year has been a T22 at the Sentry Tournament of Champions. Looking at the last 24 rounds overall, he is second to only Patrick Reed in DraftKings scoring, is 2nd in Strokes Gained: Tee to Green and Ball Striking, and 1st in Strokes Gained: Approach. On top of all that, Thomas won the PGA Championship last season in its first appearance here at the Quail Hollow Club. Like McIlroy, I don't think we need to pay this far up for cash games but splitting your GPP's between the two may be the optimal route this week.
World Golf Ranking (#72)
Vegas Odds (70/1)
Grillo has yet to miss a cut this season in 12 stroke play events with three Top 10's and five Top 25 finishes and comes to us at a value price this week. The only concern for me(it's small) is the course history as he missed the cut here last year in the PGA Championship and didn't really stand out in 2016 as he finished T61 at the Wells Fargo Championship with no rounds under 70. Why am I not too concerned you ask? He fits the course quite well when looking at his stats profile as he ranks 12th in Strokes Gained: Off the Tee with elite accuracy(7th), 14th in Strokes Gained: Ball Striking, 13th in Bogey Avoidance, and Top 20 in both Proximity from 175-200 and 200+ yards. At a sub $8K price tag on DraftKings, I will be using him in all formats.
Who the Stats Like
World Golf Ranking (#36)
Vegas Odds (90/1)
Woodland definitely didn't make the form section this week as he has missed the cut in three of his last five stroke play events and the two made cuts were less than impressive as he finished T50 and T49. He does stand out from a stats perspective, however, as he ranks #7 in that model on my sheet as he ranks 9th in Strokes Gained: Off the Tee, 12th in Strokes Gained: Ball Striking, 6th in Driving Distance, Top 10 in both Proximity from 175-200 and 200+ yards and 29th in Bogey Avoidance. No better place for him to snap out of a slump than Quail Hollow as he returns with some course history having finished T22 at the PGA Championship last year, and Top 25 in three straight Wells Fargo Championship before that. I don't think I am ready to trust him in cash games with his form but I will have plenty of exposure in GPP's this week.
World Golf Ranking (#33)
Vegas Odds (50/1)
If there was any concern about Finau's ankle after he gutted it out at The Masters it should be in the wind now as he and Daniel Summerhays performed well last week with a 6th place finish at the Zurich Classic. That is excellent news as he fits the stats profile very well this week as he ranks 2nd in Driving Distance which makes me feel better about his Top 50 ranks in Proximity from 175-200 and 200+ yards as those approach distances could be limited for him this week. He also ranks 5th in Strokes Gained: Ball Striking, 7th in Par 5 Scoring, 11th in Bogey Avoidance, and 18th in Birdie or Better %. He finished T44 at the PGA Championship last season here at Quail Hollow and has Top 30 finishes in his two appearances at the Wells Fargo Championship the two years prior. All things considered, he is in play in all formats.
Tournament Update Thread
Chris Durell has been playing Daily Fantasy Sports for five years and fantasy in general for more than a decade. He is an active player in college football, NFL, MLB, NASCAR, NHL and of course PGA. He lives in Saskatchewan, Canada with his wife and two daughters. You can follow him on Twitter at @Jager_Bombs9 for advice, strategy, answers to any PGA questions and how he copes with the winters up north.